The K-Lab

Ever wonder why guitar pickups sound different?

Does the kind of wood used to make the guitar matter?

Does it really matter what kind of magnet or type of wire is used in a guitar pickup?

We decided to find out, definitively, the answer to these and the many other questions of tone and sound that are so often debated.
In 1977, we established the premiere research laboratory dedicated to the analysis and perfection of stringed music instruments, and their associated amplifiers, loudspeakers, and effects processor. Known as The K-Lab, we have one-of-a-kind custom made electroacoustic analysis equipment and test fixtures that allows us to examine in the most minute detail every aspect of tone.

We can see the innermost workings of a guitar pickup, revealing details about its tone that have been previously unknown or not fully understood.
Whether we’re studying a guitar pickup, tone wood, a new loudspeaker, or the tonal differences among different amplifier circuits, we begin by subjecting the device under test to three different measurement that feature MLS, wavelet analysis & LogChirp analysis using either pseudo-random noise or logarithmic chirps as stimuli, depending on the data set requirements, along with straightforward Sinusoidal Sweeps.

A combination of FFT, RTA and ‘Live’ Transfer Function measurements, combined with Leq and 1/125-octave frequency analysis, permit us to view physical phenomena associated with music instruments and their components (such as: frequency response, impedance, linearity, multiple forms of distortion, and component/material-level non-linear behaviors), from three different points of view simultaneously.

This holistic approach is validated by the consistency of these measurements. Ask any expert technician, achieving unambiguous consistency is the correct approach that a researcher should always adopt.